Rodder's Digest was started in Spring 1981 by Ramblin' House Publications in Clemmons, NC. Gerry Burger was the editor and publisher, and content was focused on traditional rods and customs. Mr. Burger was heavily influenced by Rod & Custom in his youth, so this shaped his decision to focus on street rod coverage when he started the magazine. His content was mostly home-built street rods, but he'd occasionally include a pro-built car to highlight certain techniques. He also felt that rods from California were well covered in other magazines, so he used a "somewhere east of California" standard and covered east coast rod runs, cars and events.
The title was published quarterly in the beginning, then switched to six times annually through the first closure in 1999. Many consider Rodder's Digest one of the three best car magazines of the 1980s and 1990s. It featured a good mix of traditional cars and well written how-to articles.
Mr Burger sold Ramblin' House Publications to TAM Communications in 1996. John Kanter had formed TAM in 1991, and Rodder's Digest continued under his stewardship. But in 1999, TAM Communications closed operations and this title ended at the same time.
The magazine was restarted by John Dianna's Buckaroo Publishing organization around 2004. Dianna was a successful executive at Petersen Publishing, but when Petersen was sold to Primedia in 2001, he left to form his own company. Buckaroo owned a number of other titles including American Rodder and Street Rod Builder. Dianna's endeavors had a short lifespan, as his empire ended about the same time. More on John Dianna can be found here.
The table of contents, if available, can be seen by clicking on the icon.
TAM Communications provided net paid circulation data to The Standard Periodical Directory from 1998 through 2001. Annual print production was consistently reported as 58,000.
A total of 114 issues was printed from Spring, 1981 through August, 2008. All cover images are complete.